Department of Engineering

IT Services


The ABAQUS FAQ


1. General Questions

Q1.1 : How much disk space do I need?

Minimum of 10 MBytes to run simple examples if using PATRAN for Pre or Post processing. Probably about 20 MBytes for medium sized problems.
The amount of disk space required depends on the numbers of nodes/elements present in the mesh and the output frequency requested for outputting data to the *.odb, *.dat and *.res files.
The following ABAQUS files are created in the user's home directory.
*.dat, *.odb, *.res, *.msg, *.sta, *.log, *.job, *.stt, *.mdl *.023 (deleted at the completion of the ABAQUS job).
The files *.stt and *.mdl could be quite large. These files are for restarting to continue a very long (in terms of CPU time) analysis which is run in stages. If this analysis is of much shorter duration where everytime the analysis is run to completion these files can be deleted immediately to conserve disk space.

Q1.2 : What type of analysis can I carry out?

The procedures available in ABAQUS/Standard are listed below (in alphabetical order) :
  • BUCKLE
  • COUPLED TEMPERATURE-DISPLACEMENT (steady state and transient)
  • COUPLED THERMAL-ELECTRICAL (steady state and transient)
  • DYNAMIC
  • FREQUENCY
  • COMPLEX FREQUENCY
  • GEOSTATIC
  • HEAT TRANSFER (steady state and transient)
  • MASS DIFFUSION (steady state and transient)
  • MODAL DYNAMIC
  • RANDOM RESPONSE
  • RESPONSE SPECTRUM
  • SOILS, CONSOLIDATION
  • SOILS, STEADY STATE
  • STATIC
  • STEADY STATE DYNAMICS (mode based)
  • STEADY STATE DYNAMICS, DIRECT
  • STEADY STATE DYNAMICS, SUBSPACE PROJECTION
  • STEADY STATE TRANSPORT
  • VISCO
Analysis with the following procedure in run using the ABAQUS/Explicit module. The command for running this version is the same as for running the Standard version.
  • DYNAMIC, EXPLICIT


Q1.3 : What output options (hard copy) are there?

With ABAQUS 6.8 any size plots (including A3 and A4) can be obtained.
If using PATRAN hard copies of any size (including A4 and A3) can be obtained.
Various other output formats are also available :
PNG   TIFF  JEG    GIF    EPS

Q1.4 : What pre and post-processing programs are available other than ABAQUS/CAE and ABAQUS/Viewer?

PATRAN is available in the teaching system.
This program accesses the results (in the output database) file *.odb for post processing.
If you are post processing using FEMGV and have written results at element Gauss points then you need to write the gauss point co-ordinates as well. Include the following lines in the ABAQUS input file :
*EL FILE, POSITION=INTEGRATION POINTS
 S
 E
COORD 

Otherwise it will not be possible to use the FEMGV program to post process the element gauss point results ie FEMGV would not know the location of the gauss points.


Q1.5 : Is ABAQUS/Explicit available?

ABAQUS/Explicit is available in the Teaching System computers.

Q1.6 : What on-line documentation are available and how do I access it?

On-line documentation available

{ABAQUS/Standard}
  1. Getting Started with ABAQUS/Standard
  2. ABAQUS/Standard User's Manual (Volumes I, II, III, IV, V and IV)
  3. Theory (common to both Standard and Explicit versions)
  4. Example Problems Manual
  5. ABAQUS Keywords Manual
  6. Verification
  7. ABAQUS/CAE User's Manual
{ABAQUS/Explicit}
  1. Getting Started with ABAQUS/Explicit
  2. ABAQUS/Explicit User's Manual (Volumes I and II)
  3. Example Problems Manual
  4. Example Update Manual
Access the ABAQUS HTML documentation using the following URL :
http://www-abaqus.eng.am.ac.uk/v6.8 for Version 6.8

Accessing on-line Help from CAE


If users have Windows version of ABAQUS Version 6.7 or 6.8 installed in their networked PCs the on-line version of the manuals can be accessed by making the following changes : (for version 6.7 use 6.7 instead of 6.8 in the following lines)
  • In the ABAQUS installation directory find the file :
    C:\ABAQUS\6.8-1\site\abaqus_v6.env
    add the following line to the end of that file ::
    doc_root="http://www-abaqus.eng.cam.ac.uk/v6.8"
  • In the file :
    C:\ABAQUS\6.8-1\cae\Help\redirects\url.js
    set :
    var baseURL="http://www-abaqus.eng.cam.ac.uk/v6.8/books/";

In the teaching system computers on the command line type : abq681 doc

Q1.7 : What units are used in ABAQUS?

There is no inherent set of units in ABAQUS. It is up to the user to decide on a consistent set of units and use that units. Typical sets of units :
                    1            2

Length          - metres        mm
Force           - Newtons      Newtons
Time            - second       second

Mass            - Kg           tonne (**)  
Density         - Kg/m3        tonne/mm3
Stress          - N/m2         N/mm2 (= MPa)
Young's Modulus - N/m2         N/mm2 (= MPa)

** 1 tonne = 1000 kilograms

Decide on the units before you start preparing your data. This is critical. If you start typing in the nodal co-ordinates that means you have already decided on what units to user for the Length parameter. This only leaves the choice for the units of Force.
It is not a good idea to choose mm for length, Newton for force and then specify the Young's modulus in KN/m2.
A comprehensive list of consistent set of units is provided below - courtesy - Jorgen, Polymer Group Consistent set of Units (PDF Format).
© Cambridge University Engineering Dept
Information provided by abaqus-support
Last updated: 18 December 2011